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Rheumatoid Arthritis Severe Flare

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Old 06-11-2017, 01:14 PM   #1
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Post Severe Flare

Hello. My name is Kim and I have been diagnosed (twice) with Rheumatoid Arthritis. The first time was about a decade ago. The second time was about six months ago.

As an aside, in February I had a Meckel's Diverticulum and my appendix removed. For six years the doctors said it was a bowel obstruction until a specialist finally went in and discovered something else entirely. I am now pain free in my stomach and very thankful.

I began my seasonal gardening about a month ago and went hard into it. I don't have a tiller so I used a hoe. It was hard work. I did five rows and have, also, planted SEVERAL flowers, herbs, tomatoes, squash, etc. You get the picture. I'm also creating a fairy flower and herb garden in my front yard. This work has been VERY hard but good for me and I love it.

But about a week and a half ago, I hit a wall and had a flare of pain I've not previously experienced. I was planting some okra and realized I was sitting in the rain, crying. Nothing has been the same since. It feels like the life has been sucked out of me. The joints in my hands, wrists, elbows, neck, hips, ankles and feet are hurting and my knuckles are red. My feet hurt so much I put them in ice water last night. Not sure that was the smartest thing to do. I slept most of the day away yesterday and am just managing today.

My first appointment with a Rheumatologist is this Thursday and I hope she can help me. I have tried Methotrexate before but my body simply cannot tolerate it. I take Meloxicam and that does help but not enough. I want to be pain free and get my life back so I can do what I love. Right now, all I feel are my limitations and it is very, very difficult to handle. Life is going in slow motion. We are in the process of buying this house and this is the worst time this could happen.

I often deal with sciatica pain because I have a (diagnosed) curve in my lower spine (I'm guessing that is the reason, can't imagine what else could cause it). That tends to hurt a LOT when it hits.

Sometimes I get cramps. My feet curl in and I cannot walk. This has happened so many times when I am out shopping, etc. It's embarrassing.

I work nine hours a day, Mon-Fri but, fortunately, at home, for the past....nearly decade. My team is in the process of learning the ins and outs of a new site (I'm an IT Specialist).

I feel like I'm drowning and I cannot find the strength to get better on my own. I hurt so much and I'm trying to move beyond it, but right now I don't have the strength.

Anyway, this is my story. Has anyone else experienced something this severe? How are you managing? What helps you?

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Last edited by pjammies; 06-11-2017 at 01:16 PM.

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Old 07-27-2017, 09:05 AM   #2
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Re: Severe Flare

Maybe I shouldn't reply here, but let me tell you my story. As of yesterday I finally have answers and told I have arthritis all through out my spine, no fluid in between cervical c5 and C6. I am 41, a long distance runner and very physical at my job but I have felt the need to decrease stress in my life and I tired easily. I used to manage a running store and slowly went down to a job that is very physical but due to not managing a store, I have lesser stress.

March 28 this year, I was running a 14km for fun, then walked 4 km to get my son from school. I finally felt pain, the next day I couldn't move, the feet just wouldn't work. I found out I had plantar fasciitis and bursitis in my feet. I still have numbness and tingling as I type.

I had been feeling funny past year, nosebleeds that lasted 30 mins, Would happen every time I ran (finally had to get 12 nitrogen sticks to cauterize). I used to love the heat, couldn't tolerate it at all. After my runs I was exhausted that was me for the day, sit in shade and not move.

At first my fam doc thought this was just running injuries when I complained of back pain, the pinging through the back of my legs radiating to the feet. But I insisted especially after I had an accident that something was wrong with me. I know my body.

Got a referral to a neurologist who insisted I must have MS, the ER doc thought I did so I got booked that MRI. Which at that time in April I wasn't getting an MRI till July. So many unknowns. Bloodwork done was pointing to autoimmune, positive Ana, speckled pattern, low wbc and low neutrophils.

Now the Neuro said I must have Lupus all the signs are there. Pumping me full of Lyrica which I must say works with nerve pain.

Trouble is this same thing happened 6 years ago, then 3 years ago where my body just seized up to where I will not move. Can't walk past my yard.

In short I understand somewhat you are going through. Been a crazy ride and still not a concrete relief until October.

Today is a good day, I will be able to walk around the block but by the time I get to those last four houses my right leg is seized but at least I can move.

IDK why I have arthritis, maybe it's due to the running (been at it 9 years), or it could be when I walked away 17 years ago from being hit by a car where I shattered her windshield and they only had xrays.

I keep positive but I have my days too where I cry and I touch my running gear and almost through it out. But I don't.

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Old 08-11-2017, 09:31 AM   #3
Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: Warrensburg, MO 64093
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Re: Severe Flare


Yes you are in a severe flare. You should call your doctor and maybe get a round Prednisone. It sometimes helps a bit.

MadLoch, I do not know enough about Lupus or MS. I know my Brother-in-law was told he had MS and years later, he was told he did not have MS, He had strokes. MS seems to be the "Man" diagnoses equal to the Fibromyalgia dx given to women. We ar enot sure so it must be this!

I know Lupus often causes the butterfly rash, and is horrible about destroying internal organs.

Are you taking meds?

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Old 08-23-2017, 02:01 PM   #4
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Re: Severe Flare

PJAMMIES - this is 2 months after your post, and I hope you are doing better. If you haven't already, you need a referral to a rheumatologist. Rheumatologists are specialists in autoimmune diseases (rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, lupus, etc). Autoimmune diseases need to be diagnosed as early in the process as possible to get the best possible results from treatment. Treatment still will help, no matter how long you have had an autoimmune disease, just harder to get under control for long periods.
I have RA. Probably have had it for over 38 years, but not diagnosed until 2006 because my biological markers were negative or very low. This is not uncommon, as nearly 30% of people with RA do not have positive markers. The newer lab studies are more specific, and when they tested for them I was positive - and have continued positive since then. It is nice to know what I have, and it means I can take care of myself better.
Good luck to you.

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Old 08-30-2017, 12:38 AM   #5
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Re: Severe Flare

Once you are diagnosed with RA it stays with you forever. And RA is genetic. You just keep doing what you can, keep being proactive to get relief for the joint pain. And keep being as active as long as you can. My mother had RA all her life. You will do better and better. Hugs for today.

Never give up.

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